Robert Genn has interesting newsletter online this week, where he asks “How Sick are you?”
The crazy artist is a common stereotype that a lot of artists have to deal with. Some artists have truly deserved the label of the “mad artist”, some of us have mad moments, and some of us are happy, well adjusted members of society.
I think I fit into the middle category, but not because I think I’m sometimes mad. I think continually accessing our creative self opens artists up to feelings that a busy office worker or laborer wouldn’t usually experience. It’s a bit like meditating all day while holding a paint brush.
I like to think of artists as “different”, rather than crazy.
Anyway, the newsletter talks about a study that discusses a few artists with very bad eye sight..
“According to John Morley of the St. Louis School of Medicine in Missouri, the presence of cataracts leads to Impressionism. Citing Monet, Renoir and Cassatt, he implies that eye problems helped them to paint the way they did. Cezanne is mentioned for a diabetic condition that caused the color blindness that shows in his work. Van Gogh’s probable epilepsy spurred on his hallucinatory imagery–the fuzz and swirls around the stars in Starry Night.” Painters Keys